T Nation

ROM and Rep Range

CT - Was curious about two things I don’t recall being discussed recently:

  1. Do you find full (possibly extended) range of motion on specific exercises develop greater “separation”? I’ve seen some coaches recommend doing stretchier movements (i.e. deep squat vs. quarter from pins) few weeks leading up to contest citing additional definition/separation/look of fibers. You alter ROM for strength/neural but do you see aesthetic value to this?

  2. Have you found better results throwing all rep ranges into one SINGLE movement (ala HFSW) or seprating your standard/base low rep performance work on compound movements early in the week then with higher rep ranges of these movements later in the week?
    I’ve always enjoyed putting everything together (explosoive/activation -> ramp -> density work -> rep work on rings or whatever) but some popular styles separate power vs. volume workouts so as to not send mixed signals to body?

Thanks for any thoughts

[quote]-Sigil- wrote:
CT - Was curious about two things I don’t recall being discussed recently:

  1. Do you find full (possibly extended) range of motion on specific exercises develop greater “separation”? I’ve seen some coaches recommend doing stretchier movements (i.e. deep squat vs. quarter from pins) few weeks leading up to contest citing additional definition/separation/look of fibers. You alter ROM for strength/neural but do you see aesthetic value to this?

  2. Have you found better results throwing all rep ranges into one SINGLE movement (ala HFSW) or seprating your standard/base low rep performance work on compound movements early in the week then with higher rep ranges of these movements later in the week?
    I’ve always enjoyed putting everything together (explosoive/activation -> ramp -> density work -> rep work on rings or whatever) but some popular styles separate power vs. volume workouts so as to not send mixed signals to body?

Thanks for any thoughts [/quote]

  1. You can’t separate a muscle… you can only make it grow larger or smaller. Separation is only a matter of low body fat levels, lack of water retention and fascia thickness. The stretch movement to get separation is bro-science. By guess is that it comes from the fact that when you are very lean, and you perform a stretch movement, you see more separation (during the exercise) but that is only because everything is stretched, it will not make the muscle look more separated under normal circumstances.

  2. I o not critique others systems. I believe that it is best to do both in the same workout. When you understand the purpose of each method you can better see why… low reps/higher load increases fast-twitch fiber activation, then you do heavy but not maximal work to stimulate as many fibers as possible (mechanical stimulus) then the density or higher rep work pulls more blood into the muscle and increase the release of growth factors so that you can recover and grow from the mechanical stimulus.

That having been said, it doesn’t mean that exercises where the muscle is under stretch aren’t effective. They do increase the sensibility of the IGF-1 receptors. And there is this mechanical saying that goes" “the muscle being stretched the most (in a movement) is the muscle recruited the most”.

However lifts that put the muscle in a greater stretch will not make the muscle more separated.

Furthermore, I do not think that “quarter” squats from pins (you used that in your example) should be used as a main exercise to build muscle.